Saudi ambassador to UN concerns Islamophobia amid pandemic

Saudi ambassador to UN concerns Islamophobia amid pandemic
Illustration of burqa. (Indonesia Window)

Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – Permanent Representative of Saudi Arabia for the United Nations (UN) Abdullah Bin Yahya Al-Muallami has stressed the need to protect human rights, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

He expressed his concern about the growing phenomenon of Islamophobia and the escalation hate speech against Muslims in several countries in the world, Saudi Gazette reported as quoted by Indonesia Window here on Saturday.

In a speech during a virtual meeting of the ambassador of the Islamic Cooperation Organization (OIC) in New York recently, Al-Muallami also called for the need to confront the practice of discrimination and racism against Muslims and the persecution they face for unreasonable and unacceptable reasons.

The ambassador highlighted Saudi Arabia’s stances in promoting a culture of dialogue among followers of religions, rejecting all manifestations of violence.

He said that the kingdom supports the positions of Islamic countries within the framework of the OIC to reject discrimination and racism practiced against Muslims in some countries of the world, and that their human rights must be safeguarded.

The meeting was attended by the head of the special political issues committee, and the head of the International Organizations Department of the Kingdom’s delegation Faisal Bin Nasser Al-Haqbani.

Ambassadors of the group also heard a briefing from the permanent representative of the state of Palestine, Minister Riyad Mansour, on the latest developments on the Palestinian issue, highlighting Israeli violations in the occupied Palestinian territories and the expansionist intentions of the Israeli occupation forces to annex more lands in the West Bank and the Jordan Valley, which is a clear violation of the international resolutions, undermining international peace efforts.

The Islamic group also heard a briefing from the permanent representative Pakistan, Ambassador Munir Akram, on the escalation of Islamophobia and hate speech and incitement against Muslims in a number of European countries.

He touched up on incidents of discrimination and racism practiced against Muslims by some extreme right-wing parties in Europe, especially in light of the crisis brought about by the epidemic.

With the decreasing number of positive cases of COVID-19, several European countries are now beginning to open lockdown by setting regulations for all people to wear health masks or face cover in public places.

However, burqa bans are still imposed in France, the Netherlands, Belgium and several other European countries, something that is considered ridiculous by a number of human rights activists.

Reporting by Indonesia Window

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